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A SWOT analysis of Lankans and Kiwis

cricket Updated: Apr 24, 2007 03:00 IST
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The first semifinal is a battle of equals, and the manner in which they have made it this far suggests both Sri Lanka and New Zealand would like to keep the momentum going. A look at the pluses and minuses of either team:

Sri Lanka

-Jayasuriya is on fire. Sangakkara is due for a big one and Jayawardene is looking good too, and if they manage some runs from No. 4 downwards, they will emerge as frontrunners for a big score.

-Probably have the most versatile attack. With three wickettakers in Vaas, Malinga and Muralitharan, and Jayasuriya and Dilshan’s slower ones, the bowling can be quite a handful.

-Flexibility is their forte, and this lot has a number of players who can step in if others have a bad day.

New Zealand

-Irrespective of their decent batting, Shane Bond is the undisputed cutting edge, when fully fit. His first spell will be of importance. Daniel Vettori is the other key man and can form a handy combination with Jeetan Patel.

-Can adapt quickly and have options to fall back on. Oram can make a difference with both bat, and there are others who can chip in.

-Batting is still a concern, since not much can be said about how well Fulton or Taylor could handle the Sri Lankan mixed bag.